The Growing Experience
Location: Long Beach
The Growing Experience (TGE) is an urban farm in Long Beach that provides access to organic local food, job training, open green space, and community events for low-income communities. The farm was created in 2009 on a 7-acre former nursery site at the Carmelitos Public Housing Development operated by the Housing Authority of the County of Los Angeles.
Jimmy Ng, Program Director of The Growing Experience, believes it is important to have strong community involvement in a program like this in order for activities and projects to be sustainable over the long term. Engaging youth has been a motivator for them to look after the farm and participate in events.
The Growing Experience produces many vegetables, fruits, and herbs, as well as chickens for eggs and tilapia for their demonstration aquaponics system. They also produce several value-added products, including jams and dehydrated fruit and herbs, which they process in their recently certified community kitchen. The Growing Experience offers a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program with weekly pickups consisting of a box of fruits and vegetables – often of unusual and heirloom varieties. The farm also runs a Saturday farmers market that provides seasonal local fresh produce from TGE as well as other local farms to Long Beach residents.
Website: The Growing Experience
Social Media: Facebook
Video: The Growing Experience